Our top tips for making the most of your self-catering break

So you’ve decided on your place to stay, you know the basics you need to pack but the difference is this time you have the car (not just one suitcase) and you’re going self catered. No changing of currency or frantic finger crossing to be within weight; but this time you have to think about food. Self catered is a phrase - for those more used to ‘all inclusive’ - that can strike fear into the heart of even the most avid traveller! But honestly there’s no need to worry; here we take you through our guide to making the most of a self catered break. With a bit of pre-planning, a cool box and a crate of essentials, a self-catering break can be carefree!

So a few things to consider before you start planning:

  • How many days are you away?
  • How many people are going with you?
  • How much do you want to cook vs. going out?
  • How much can you take with you? (think Mini vs. Range Rover)
  • What meals will you want to cover - breakfast, lunch, dinner - during your stay?

The best advice we think is to get everyone together before you go and discuss potential menu ideas. Planning meals ahead of time can be a real lifesaver; because after a day at the beach, walking the mountains or the miles of coastal path the last thing you want is to have no idea what you’re going to cook up. We’re sure you’ll come across places you’ll want to eat out during your stay, even if it’s just fish ‘n’ chips enjoyed on the beachfront, so planning for everyday may not be necessary. Don’t forget there will be food shops for local ingredients or any forgotten bits and bobs.

Bed linen and bath towels (not beach towels) are provided by each cottage along with an initial supply of the essentials. But we think there are certain things to bring that can be bought beforehand and packed up so you are perfectly prepared. If you’re stuck for space whilst travelling, you can easily top up once you arrive and buy fresh local produce to supplement your essentials.

All cottages come stocked with enough kitchen equipment to cook up a hearty feast. Below we list a few suggestions of things that can be crated up and should mean your first stop doesn't have to be the shops!

  • Tea / Coffee
  • Sugar / Sweetener
  • Cereal
  • Pasta / Rice / Potatoes
  • Sauces
  • Snacks / Chocolate / treats
  • Your favourite wine / beer
  • Soft drinks of choice
  • Bread
  • Washing up liquid / dishwasher tablets (if the cottage has one it’s noted in facility details)
  • Toiletries
  • Toilet roll

If you own a cool box and have the space, some people prefer to stock up on fridge items before heading off on holiday. So you can make sure you have your your favourites: milk, butter, cheese, yoghurts, things to make up sandwiches, meats or fish for meals on your menu. Essentially anything you want to keep cold and fill up the cottage fridge on arrival!

This way the majority of the budgeting for food has occured before you even travel, leaving you knowing what you’d like to spend on meals out. Whether it be a hearty breakfast before a walk, a lunch at a coastal cafe or a special holiday evening meal. You also have an idea about the meals you can conjure up, taking the stress out of self-catered. Anything you don’t end up using can be taken home with you - so nothing will be wasted; or alternatively you'll have plenty of space to stock up on those local butcher’s sausages or tasty homemade bara brith!

Other than that we suggest making sure you make the most of being out and about, remember simple filling things will always go down a treat with hungry family and friends after a full day exploring North Wales.

Want to find a cottage that's right for you, ready for your own self catered break? Take a look on our website or phone our friendly team on 01248 430258 and they will happy to help!

Thursday 4 August 2016